Nick Foles benched for Gardner Minshew in loss to Bucs

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  • By Grant Gordon NFL.com
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Faced with a 25-point deficit at halftime, the Jaguars benched a struggling Nick Foles for rookie Gardner Minshew in Sunday's eventual 28-11 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Minshew replacing Foles came after Foles performed woefully in the first half with three turnovers (two fumbles), three sacks and a 41.7 passer rating with seven completions for 93 yards in 14 attempts.

Foles and the Jaguars' lackluster performance led to jeers from the home crowd that turned to cheers upon Minshew's arrival. The rookie appreciated the latter, but spoke out about the former just the same.

"One thing I didn't appreciate was a lot of the booing today," Minshew said. "You got guys that [are] putting their hearts out there every play, every game, and nobody deserves that. I hated how that was, but I was also super appreciative of the support."

Minshew led the Jaguars to all 11 of their points in relief of Foles and finished the game 16-of-27 for 147 yards with a touchdown to Dede Westbrook (and a two-point conversion) and an interception.

Jacksonville coach Doug Marrone told reporters after the game that he will not announce the Week 14 starting quarterback against the Chargers until speaking with Foles and Minshew.

Foles, who signed with the Jaguars as a free agent in the offseason, was injured in Week 1 and Minshew, a rookie out of Washington State, filled in admirably and then some as Minshew Mania had the NFL world running wild for a while.

This was Foles' third start since returning from a clavicle injury and the Jaguars have yet to win with him under center. For the season now, Foles is 0-4 as a starter, though he didn't finish his initial outing against the Chiefs back in Week 1 or this Sunday's against the Buccaneers.

Whether this will be the latest or last time Minshew, who is 4-4 as a starter, replaces Foles is now the most prevalent storyline for the Jaguars (4-8), who have lost four in row.

For an afternoon, Minshew was back in for the Jags. Whether it's for the rest of the season going forward and whether the Mania will return remains to be seen.

"We're all in this together," Minshew said. "We're all trying to figure this out."

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